2013-09-05 / Sports

New Michigan law in effect for youth sports concussions

LANSING – With the start of the new school year, athletic programs have new rules to follow to help protect young athletes. A recent law that went into effect on June 30, regulates sports concussions for youth athletes in Michigan. Governor Rick Snyder signed the law in October 2012, making Michigan the 39th state to make a commitment to protect minors in athletic activities.

In the law, there are a number of important directives that the organizing entity, parents, and youth must follow. One of the most important directives is that a youth athlete must be removed from play if a concussion is suspected. He or she may not return to athletic activities until written clearance is received from an appropriate health professional. The statute also requires that adults involved in a youth athletic activity receive training on sports concussions, and that youth athletes and their parents or guardians receive educational information on sports concussions, so that everyone involved in the sports knows what signs and symptoms to look for.

“Our hope is that with more education, immediate action, and cautious return to athletic participation, together we can prevent the life changing effects that can result from a sports concussion,” said Dr. Matthew Davis, Chief Medical Executive with the Michigan Department of Community Health.

The MDCH has developed a web page www.michigan.gov/ sportsconcussion to address the issue.

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